Earthquake's Impact on the People of Haiti

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On January 12th, 2010, the small Caribbean nation of Haiti was struck by a 7.0 magnitude earthquake. This was the worst earthquake to hit the region in over two centuries (BBC News). More than fifty aftershocks measuring over 4.5 followed within the next two weeks. The earthquakes left Haiti in shambles and exacerbated their conditions. There were 3.5 million people affected and over 220 thousand killed (Disasters Emergency Committee). Major damage was caused at the Haitian capital, Port-au-Prince. The country was manifestly unprepared for this event and Haiti was propelled into a downward spiral. The 2010 Haiti earthquake was a devastating event which furthered the country’s social, economic, and political instability. The earthquake had a significant impact on the people of Haiti. It has been described as the most destructive natural disaster to occur since World War II, causing nearly $13.2 billion in damage (Inter-American Development Bank). 300,000 homes were destroyed leaving millions of Haitians homeless. As a result, millions of displaced Haitians were forced to settle into makeshift tent camps. These camps were built by the government to offer Haitians temporary sanctuaries. However, for many, they ended up being permanent. Although, these tent camps were inexpensive and simple to construct, numerous issues surrounded them. These tents were not secure; they were unsafe. Inhabitants found themselves worrying about their tents collapsing because they were unable to withstand severe weather conditions. In addition to being structurally unsound, the tents had poor sanitation. When it rained, people were left wading through a mixture of mud and feces due to the floorless tents (McNeil). Clean water was not accessible to... ... middle of paper ... ...lopment." Global Post. Global Post, n.d. Web. 03 Mar. 2014. "Key Statistics." Lessons from Haiti. N.p., n.d. Web. 02 Mar. 2014. Mcneil, Donald G. "HAITI: Cholera's Second Fever: An Urge to Blame." The New York Times. The New York Times, 20 Nov. 2010. Web. 03 Mar. 2014. Melia, Mike. "Ex-drug Lords' Property Used by Haiti Government." U-T San Diego. N.p., n.d. Web. 03 Mar. 2014. Miller, Talea. "Haiti’s Farms Sow Hope for Rebuilding." PBS. PBS, n.d. Web. 03 Mar. 2014. "Million Plus Remain Homeless and Displaced in Haiti: One Year After Quake." Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti. IJDH, n.d. Web. 03 Mar. 2014. Trenton, Daniel. "More than Half U.S. Aid for Haiti Earthquake Went to U.S. Firms: Study." CTV News. CTV, 5 Apr. 2013. Web. 3 Mar. 2014. "World Food Programme Fighting Hunger Worldwide." World Food Programme. WFP, 11 Jan. 2013. Web. 03 Mar. 2014.

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